Julia Johnson, an assistant professor of communication studies and feminist studies at Southwestern University in Texas, was on campus on Monday, Jan. 14 and Tuesday the 15th to lead a two-day faculty institute, “Communicating Inclusively.” Sessions were held at The Center for Teaching and Learning on South Main Street, and organized by Susan Pliner, CTL director.
She addressed both intercultural communication competence and the use of oral communication to achieve inclusivity. Johnson instructed the 18 faculty members using various tactics and approaches, such as role playing, developing lesson plans, and group feedback, to improve their ability to engage students in in-class dialogue and develop public speaking skills. Participants were also coached in ways to develop a teaching persona and communicative strategy.
“Communicating Inclusively is a follow-up to the “Oral Communication Institute that was held in May. Supplementing President Mark D. Gearan’s Commission for Inclusive Excellence, the institute focused on addressing differences in the curriculum through the subjects of equity, social justice, cultural competence, and engaged citizenship through enhanced communicative skills.
Johnson has taught communication principles and practices in corporate (McDonnell Douglas, Customer Service Builders Council) and non-profit settings (University of Richmond, California State University) since 1989, emphasizing critical approaches to the study of communication and culture. She holds a doctorate from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, and has taught at several campuses of the California State University system.